What’s for Dinner?

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“What’s for dinner?” is the most dreaded text I get from the MR on a daily basis during the work week.  It typically appears on my phone a couple hours after lunch and right in the middle of me making a breakthrough on a big project I’ve been working on all day.  “What’s for dinner?”…I swear I can hear it echoing.  I’m typically already exhausted from my long day, and the last thing I want to think about is what I’m going to have to cook for dinner when I get home! Not that I mind cooking, in fact I really love to cook!  It’s just that, to me, choosing what we eat for dinner each night is seriously one of the most stressful parts of my day.  The MR is a super picky eater, and while one week he might love Hamburger Helper and can’t get enough of it, the next week he acts like eating it is the equivalent of eating poison (and great, b/c I just stocked up!).  Determined to make my week a little less stressful I wanted to come up with something to help take the pressure off on a daily basis.

After talking it out with the MR we both agreed a weekly menu plan (that we could talk about over the weekend and decide on) would be the perfect solution, but the question remained, how to make it work for us.  I have seen several paper tear away ones at Target, but I hate waste like that.  And there were several I found on Pinterest, but most of those had to do with a picture frame hung on a wall, and we don’t really have a good space for something like that in our kitchen or some kind of printable (again…the waste issue).  So I started scheming, and decided that a dry erase board on the fridge would be our best bet.  I didn’t want to just buy a white board though.  They are always so thick and clunky and the magnets on them are never strong enough to actually hold the board on the fridge door for any extended period of time.  And while I found a dry erase vinyl, I didn’t like the idea of just applying that directly to the fridge.  That is when I came across magnet paper from Silhouette.  I could even cut it down to size and whatever shape I wanted using my trusty Cameo that the MR surprised me with back in January!  So now that I had my solution, it was time to make it happen!!!

For this project I used:

Silhouette Magnet Paper

Turquoise Vinyl

Dry Erase Vinyl in White

Transfer Tape

The transfer tape, vinyls and magnet sheet(s) I used for this project.

The transfer tape, vinyls and magnet sheet(s) I used for this project.

To start I laid out a design in the Silhouette Studio Designer Edition software.  Once I was happy with my designs I got to cutting I sent them to the Cameo layer by layer to be cut!

First I laid out my design to my liking in the Studio software.

First I laid out my design to my liking in the Studio software.  As you can see, I added a few more magnets to the mix!

All three of my cuts.  The dry erase vinyl is hard to see because it blends in with the backing.

All three of my cuts. The dry erase vinyl is hard to see because it blends in with the backing.

Once everything was cut out it was time to put it all together.  The dry erase board vinyl is a bit thicker and stiffer than the colored vinyl I’m used to, and my first attempt at layering it over the turquoise resulted in a very rough finished product full of air bubbles.  So in an attempt to get a better finished product I focused strictly on the layering, and I apologize, but I don’t have any “in process” pictures to share.  I did use my trusty layering technique where I add little squares near the top of my image and use those to line up my design to make sure it is layered exactly how I intended it to be!  (However, when working with the dry erase vinyl, one of my little markers didn’t come off onto the transfer tape and I didn’t realize it until it was too late!  And both we’re cut short since I didn’t cut the cut sheet big enough. whoops)

SONY DSC

Layering the dry erase and turquoise vinyls.

Once I had them layered up, I applied them to the magnet sheet I had cut.  Again, sorry for no pictures of that step!  After I was finished with the base portion of the magnet I added my titles for each respective magnet.  I ended up with three magnets.  I made one large magnet for our menu and two smaller ones for a grocery list and notes (or as the MR suggested I title it, “The Honey-Do List” since that’s what it was going to end up serving as!).  To apply the titles, I weeded out the negative space until I was left with what I needed and applied some transfer tape.

Weed out any negative vinyl and apply transfer tape.

Weed out any negative vinyl and apply transfer tape.

Once I burnished the design to ensure the transfer tape had completely adhered to the vinyl, I peeled back the design and applied it to the magnet.  I burnished once again to ensure that the design adhered to the magnet and then carefully peeled back the transfer tape.

Burnishing the transfer tape to ensure it grabs onto the vinyl design.

Burnish the transfer tape to ensure it grabs onto the vinyl design.

Next, slowly peel back the design.  If you notice that it isn't coming up very easily, try flipping it over and peeling off the backing.

Next, slowly peel back the design. If you notice that it isn’t coming up very easily, try flipping it over and peeling off the backing.

Place design on magnet in desired spot.

Place design on magnet in desired spot.

Burnish once more to ensure that the vinyl adheres to the desired surface (in this case, the dry erase magnet).

Burnish once more to ensure that the vinyl adheres to the desired surface (in this case, the dry erase magnet).

SONY DSC

Finally, slowly peel back the transfer tape. If you notice any lifting, allow the transfer tape to fall back into place and burnish again.

And there you have it!!  A simple, clean and easy solution to help you plan and stick to a menu for the week!!!  We just started this week, and I already feel less stressed coming home from work.  Next I want to try to make something up to help me avoid making the same thing too often!  I’m thinking something like teachers always use to help them call on all students (like the popsicle sticks from one cup to the next).  But for now, this will definitely help me stress less about what’s for dinner!!

All three finished magnets!!

All three finished magnets!!

We wasted no time putting them to work!!

We wasted no time putting them to work!!

Have you found any good ways to deal with choosing what to cook on a daily/weekly basis?  I’d love to hear about them!!!

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15 thoughts on “What’s for Dinner?

  1. Can you link the exact shape you used? I can’t seem to find it but it is the perfect shape for this. Thank you so much!

  2. This is a great idea! I have a group that may be interested in this. I may make one for myself as I am horrible with this and is one of my nine habits each day. I have a hard time sticking to one as it is just me. But if it was on the fridge where I am forced to look at it , this may work!

    • I can totally relate on having difficulty sticking to a menu, but as a disclaimer, we do keep a couple favorites on hand that we can switch out meals for, but I try to only do that once a week!!! In the last month we’ve had this though I’ve noticed I throw less bad/spoiled food away, and I’m saving $ on my grocery bill!!! And it gets easier to stick to it the longer your at it I think! 😃

  3. Pingback: Grilled Balsamic Pork Tenderloin | The Five to Niner

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